Post Ostrom Mathematics Colloquium: Mathematical Models Provide New Insights into Stopping Epidemics
4:10 PM; Neill Hall 5W
James ‘Mac’ Hyman
Abstract: The pace that new diseases threaten the world is increasing. The current H1N1 flu pandemic follows on the heels of recent epidemics for Herpes-2, Hepatitis C, HIV/AIDS, SARS, and avian flu. Public health workers are reaching out to use all available tools to anticipate the spread of new diseases and evaluate the effectiveness of different approaches for bringing epidemics under control. I will describe how mathematical models, based on the underlying transmission mechanisms, have advanced to help guide these efforts. Today, mathematical scientists are joining with biological, epidemiological, behavioral, and social scientists to fight these emerging epidemics. I will give an overview of what type of insights these models can provide. I will also touch briefly on the underlying mathematical advances and theory needed for the next generation of models, and share my personal experiences in controlling the spread of HIV/AIDS, SARS, malaria, foot and mouth disease, and the novel H1N1 (swine) flu.